At the start of every new year, most people reflect on the past and set goals for themselves. I even found a website where you can pledge a certain amount of money, and if you don't meet your goals you have to pay up! It sends reminders to you and will even post on your Facebook for all to see if you meet or miss a goal! I am not sure I am ready for anyone to announce to the world if I don't meet my goals, but I do try to follow a process when I do this in hope that the structure will help me maintain my commitment and focus. This is the process that works for me: first, I list the things that I have accomplished or made progress towards, and why I have been successful in these areas. Next, I list the things that have not been as successful. I then review the list and pick two or three that are the highest priority and set concrete goals-both short term and long term-to help me stay on track. As educators, we work in a system that provides formative checkpoints (3 week progress reports & 9 week grades), so I try to incorporate the same timelines into my goal setting. I would like to hear from others about the process they use. What system do you use to help you stay on track and meet your goals?
As an educator, I have always believed that you should never stop learning. For several years I worked on advanced degrees or taught courses at the university. The demands of my current position make these activities difficult if not impossible. To keep my brain engaged and challenged I joined a book study, reading Crucial Conversations by Patterson, Grenny. McMillan & Switzler. This is an outstanding read and a must for anyone, not just educators. Not only is it well written and interesting, it is also applicable to any situation in life. We will soon be looking for another good book, and I am interested in what other people are currently reading for their own professional growth. Please share your favorites!